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Church

I just want to be brutally honest here because I’ve only got one life here on earth and there’s no point in tiptoeing around the real stuff. I think we’re moving toward authenticity, for sure, but it’s still filtered. We’ll post a photo or a story of us wearing no makeup or of our messy living room or piles of laundry but it’s still a snapshot that we chose. At the end of the day, we chose that shot.

But there’s some shit that we just don’t choose, and it’s ugly as sin.

I’ve dealt with some really difficult issues on my blog, and my courage and vulnerability has only been met with grace and kindness. Which, you know, is soothing and comfortable. But that’s not what I want. I want to feel pain and discomfort and I want you to feel it too and I want us to be able to stand in it. Stand right inside of it together, feeling all the feels, hands to our hearts, our smile wrinkles borrowed for sorrow, our mouths casting shadows on each other.

There is a time and a place and a sacred space to share the really deep-rooted stuff, for sure, and a running blog is hardly that time and place and sacred space, unless I make it one. Church is anywhere we choose it to be. And that’s what I want. I want to make this one in case you need it. Even if you show up to church here in your mind, stretching and writhing and groping and crying. If I reach you, if you reach me, it’s church. It’s the time and place and a sacred space.

I’ll go first. Being closely connected to someone with bipolar disorder is the single most difficult thing I have ever had to deal with in my lifetime, and I have not had a sheltered life. Sometimes, okay, oftentimes, I wish that it was me with bipolar disorder. I do. Because it’s a card I could play for bad behaviour. I could drop a zillion bucks on new clothes and fancy meals and weekends away in luxurious hotels and know that my loved ones will clean up the mess I made when I check back into real life. I’ve been “manicky” before, for sure, but when I am, I’m riddled with anxiety about it and my conscience hangs over the good times like a crucifix on a rear view mirror.

But then I don’t want it. I don’t. It’s like when Callum wakes me up at 2am and I can’t go back to sleep because I get this weird fake middle of the night hunger that will only be satisfied by four breaded hot wings, a Caramilk bar and a pint of milk. I want it, I do. But I don’t want it. I don’t.

I don’t want advice. And if you ever tell me your story, I won’t give you advice either. I just want to stand beside you and sip our church coffees together.

XO

Suzy

 

{ 24 comments… add one }
  • Allie February 18, 2017, 9:25 am

    AMEN!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 18, 2017, 1:30 pm

      *hallelujah hands*

  • Susie @ Suzlyfe February 18, 2017, 9:49 am

    I would love to share coffee side by side with you. But get your own because yu know i like mine black and mostly decaf.

    This sums up all my feels with regards to how and why and what I share. I post comments I could hide because I want people to know that I have nothing to hide and also that it is a ok to think as you want. But I’ve been blessed that 98% of the comments that I get are respectful and supportive, even if they don’t agree with me.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 18, 2017, 1:29 pm

      I’m really glad that you get mostly respectful and supportive feedback. I know we can both handle criticism, for sure, like duh. But there’s a way to go about it that can be helpful and respectful. Unfortunately, when people go about it in a destructive way, they only nullify the validity of their argument. Our choices/lifestyles aren’t bizarre or anything but they’re definitely off the normal curve, whatever that is. And who gives a shit about normal anyway. *yawn* So we’re bound to get some comments written by people in knotted panties.

  • Lisa @ Lisa 3D February 18, 2017, 10:22 am

    Love the honesty. I too am closely connected to someone with bipolar disorder and others with different but similar problems. It can be very difficult to be the one taking care of another person.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 18, 2017, 1:27 pm

      It’s tough, eh? Thank you for letting me know I’m not alone! I mean, I know I’m not, but it’s nice to be reminded sometimes. xo

  • Amy Lauren February 18, 2017, 11:21 am

    I’m not sure if you’re a country music fan or not, but if you haven’t heard the song “Saltwater Gospel”, spotify it. The singer talks about how the beach is his church. It’s a really beautiful song with a great meaning.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 18, 2017, 1:25 pm

      I don’t necessarily *choose* country, but I certainly appreciate all types of music! I will check it out; thanks Amy!

  • molly rose February 18, 2017, 3:14 pm

    Amen!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 18, 2017, 6:33 pm

      <3

  • Megan @ Meg Go Run February 18, 2017, 4:53 pm

    I love your honesty! Sometimes I am jealous Paul doesn’t have to work. I think it’s human nature.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 18, 2017, 6:33 pm

      I’ve thought about that before! I’ve thought about how you must feel. I’d get resentful and then I’d feel guilty, and then I’d act out, which would be hurtful and destructive. That would be so hard. And yeah, that’s all totally human nature. We always think it’s easier to be someone else, but it never is. It kinda reminds me of how when I first became a mom I’d count down the seconds until Jake slept through the night, and then I’d look forward to all the things that come with getting older, because I thought it would get easier. It’s never easier, it just gets different.

      • Megan @ Meg Go Run February 19, 2017, 6:26 am

        I used to get really resentful because I felt like I was doing EVERYTHING… and I basically was cause he can’t drive either. Now he does more around the house so I actually haven’t been resentful on awhile.

  • Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home February 19, 2017, 10:39 am

    The one thing I hear the most from people about my blog is how much they love my raw honesty. I never intended it to be that way, but hey, that’s me. I think you are like that too. I’m going to church with you.

  • Sheila February 20, 2017, 8:41 am

    The two most powerful words I have heard in a long time…..”stand beside”. Those made my heart swell with joy but also quiver. It is scary but it is ok for the distance to changed between where you stand – because standing a little further away sometimes will enable you to stand even closer.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 20, 2017, 9:33 am

      I had to read your comment twice just to get it to sink in. It’s so meaty and powerful and SO TRUE. Thank you for writing it out, Sheila!

  • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets February 20, 2017, 11:57 am

    This title makes me break out into song, “Take me to church. I worship like a dog…”

    I like your church. I’ll go to church with you anytime, and of course you’re always welcome in mine.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 20, 2017, 5:25 pm

      *hipbump*

  • Russ February 20, 2017, 1:25 pm

    Yes – church is not a building you go to…and I wish the people that went “to church” (myself included) would be more willing to say at the meet-n-greet time “hey, my name is and I’m fairly messed up…and you don’t want to know the deep, dark stuff I keep tucked away from everyone else…” instead of putting on the faux-veneer smile that keeps people away.

    That being said, the group who happens to “do church” with us right now, is far more real than most groups who go “to church” and something I’ve missed for about 6 years…and yes, we meet on Sundays at a set location…the group that we “do church” with…along w/ lots of opportunities for time outside of the set-time on Sunday mornings.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 20, 2017, 5:15 pm

      You know what that scene reminds me of? My dad’s AA meetings. No bullshit. Well, actually, yeah, there’s a tonne of bullshit because alcoholics (or any addicts) are the biggest bullshitters of all time BUT… they all know that about each other, so when they start selling their bs, they get called on it, STAT. It’s amusing. My dad started calling HIMSELF out on his bullshit halfway through his grandiose stories! Ha ha ha! He’d be like “Oh yeah! I did that once, naked, for a thousand bucks….okay no, I didn’t. I’m lying.” Ha ha ha. He’s the best.

  • Dawn February 22, 2017, 12:27 pm

    Love your blog!
    Thank u for writing this!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 22, 2017, 3:27 pm

      I appreciate your kind words, Dawn!

  • San February 25, 2017, 6:05 pm

    Sometimes listening to each other is all we need. Sometimes there is no advice, no solution, just hanging in there together.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 25, 2017, 6:23 pm

      GOSPEL.

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